Today I went on a school trip to Lincoln in Lincolnshire. Its a small old town that used to be the fourth largest and most important city in England. While its existed it has been controlled by Anglos, Saxons, Vikings and Romans. There is still a standing cathedral which is the fourth largest in England and most of a castle.
When you enter the city, you are faced with a massive glorious cathedral and old cobblestone streets. This all lies at the top of a large hill. As you travel down the hill, the town gets newer.
The streets are really quaint and the buildings are really well kept.
It was pretty cheap to go on tours so I took a tour of the cathedral and of the castle. But before doing that, I enjoyed my first Americano in England. The coffee served in this cellar coffee, tea and book shop is all made in the top of the same building. The tea and coffee is sold here by the kilogram as well. Since I don’t have a coffee maker or tea pot I just opted for a take-a-way (that’s what they call a to-go drink).
Here is the Lincoln Cathedral
The tour was really informative. The windows shown below all depict Bible figures and stories from the Old Testament. On the other side of the cathedral are stained glass windows depicting New Testament stories and teachings of Jesus.
My favorite of the stained glass windows is a themed window. Its one that rather than telling a story, tells a theme. The theme of this window was the importance of learning. It starts with Samuel at the bottom, then Jesus as a young boy, then Jesus teaching his disciples. This was my favorite window because it was dedicated to George Bool the famous mathematician who created Boolean Algebra. I got pretty excited when the tour guide told us that. I am sure I looked pretty strange running up to it in my rain boots and capturing a photo while everyone watched.
Throughout the cathedral are tons of stained glass windows. The most notable are at the North, South, East and West ends. The West end was beautiful and meant to signify the beginning of your life with Christ. The East end represented the end of our journey and the entrance into heaven. The South end of the cathedral held a large circular window that was suppose to serve as the Bishop’s eye. The story goes that the eye (window) watched the town to be sure there was no wickedness occurring. The North end of a cathedral is considered evil. Thus the window here was supposed to serve as a shield from that evil.
What amazed me most was all the details of the cathedral. Everywhere had hours and hours of work carved into it hundreds of years ago!
The cathedral was really cold so when the tour was finished. I found a nice tea shop next to a fudgery and enjoyed eating sweets and drinking tea with my American friend, Rob.
Now that we were both warm, Rob and I joined a guided tour of the castle ruins. The castle is currently being renovated. By the time it is finished, one will be able to walk around the entire complete walls.
This is last picture (above) is where the villagers would barricade themselves if under attack. Later it was used for a graveyard.
Being on top of the walls of the castle was very cold! By the time we finished our tour, we were tired and hungry. So we stopped at the first place we saw and I had a traditional English lunch. The place we ate was called the Magna Carter and I had the turkey pie with pasties and peas. When you get meat pie they also give you gravy and lots of different condiments. I thought that was pretty cool and tried them all.
After lunch I explored some of Lincoln with Rob. My favorite thing was finding bookstores. We found one where the books were piled really high and there was basically no organization to the place. Amazingly if you asked the woman for a book she knew exactly where it was. I have decided to call her the Bookkeeper! Here are some pictures of this amazing place.
We wandered around the streets a bit more and found some interesting shops.
Not long after walking up and down the massive hill that dominates the town, it began raining. This was a great opportunity to expand our cultural and historical education. We went to two museums. The first was an archeology museum showing the history of Lincoln. That’s where I found this great guy.
Next we went to an Art museum. I love art and this was my favorite part of the day. I enjoyed it so much that I completely forgot to take pictures. I just walked around for an hour trying to imagine what the artist was thinking or what people thought the artist was thinking as they saw it. Some of the art was hundreds of years old. I was also surprised to find that I recalled learning about some of the artist in history class in high school.
By the time Rob dragged me out of the art museum, we had just a bit of time to enjoy one more tea shop. Knowing I wouldn’t survive the walk back to the bus stop without coffee, I opted for a latte. Here is a couple pictures of our last stop.
I would definitely say the day was a success. The next school trip is to Liverpool in February and I plan to visit family in Holland in a couple weeks, so be sure to check back.